Top 10 Weird Al Yankovic Parody Songs

Weird Al Yankovic has reigned for 30 years as the unchallenged king of the pop music parody. This list pulls together his 10 best moments.

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Eat It (1984)

Weird Al Yankovic - Eat It
Weird Al Yankovic - "Eat It". Courtesy Scotti Brothers

Weird Al's pop chart breakthrough, parodying Michael Jackson's "Beat It," is still an amazing feat. The video is filled with brilliant sight gags from the smiley face jacket to an exploding guitar player. Weird Al's deliberately lame dance moves reinforce how amazing Michael Jackson's dancing was at his peak.

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White & Nerdy (2006)

Weird Al Yankovic - White and Nerdy
Weird Al Yankovic - "White and Nerdy". Courtesy Volcano

This song became Weird Al Yankovic's first top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 after over 20 years as the most loved and reviled music parodist in the business. The video amounts to a nerd encyclopedia with references to Star Trek, Wikipedia, Dungeons & Dragons, and much, much more. Chamillionaire, the target of this parody (it's a takeoff on his huge hit "Ridin'"), admits to being a fan.

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Like a Surgeon (1985)

Weird Al Yankovic - Like a Surgeon
Weird Al Yankovic - "Like a Surgeon". Courtesy Scotti Brothers

It did not take long for Weird Al to take on Madonna. Reportedly, Madonna herself suggested the parody. The medical industry is a target of Weird Al's sharp wit as well. A favorite moment in the video is the unexplained lion wandering through the hospital echoing the lion in Madonna's "Like a Virgin" video.

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Amish Paradise (1996)

Weird Al Yankovic - Amish Paradise
Weird Al Yankovic - "Amish Paradise". Courtesy Scotti Brothers

This was one of Weird Al Yankovic's most controversial releases due to the fact that it was unclear whether Coolio, creator of the parody target "Gangsta's Paradise," had given permission for the song. Despite the controversy, the video, featuring Florence Henderson (taking Michelle Pfeiffer's role from the "Gangsta's Paradise" video) and a host of goofy Amish takeoffs, is very very funny. Don't miss the Gilligan's Island homage in the lyrics.

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The Saga Begins (1999)

Weird Al Yankovic - The Saga Begins
Weird Al Yankovic - "The Saga Begins". Courtesy Volcano

It's a mash-up of "American Pie" and the plot of Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace in inimitable Weird Al Yankovic style. This one became a favorite on Radio Disney.

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Money for Nothing / Beverly Hillbillies (1989)

Weird Al Yankovic - UHF Soundtrack
Weird Al Yankovic - UHF Soundtrack. Courtesy Scotti Brothers

Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler was pleased enough with this parody of "Money for Nothing" that he re-recorded a guitar part for it. Who would have thought Jed Clampett could be blended so humorously with Dire Straits?

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My Bologna (1983)

Weird Al Yankovic - Weird Al Yankovic
Weird Al Yankovic - Weird Al Yankovic. Courtesy Scotti Brothers

This is where it all started. The young Weird Al Yankovic became a favorite on Dr. Demento's radio show with this classic takeoff on the Knack's "My Sharona." It all boils down to Weird Al, an accordion, and a hat.

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Smells Like Nirvana (1992)

Weird Al Yankovic - Off the Deep End
Weird Al Yankovic - Off the Deep End. Courtesy Scotti Brothers

Mumbling lead vocalists take a hit here. Nirvana reportedly considered Weird Al's parody of their classic "Smells Like Teen Spirit" as a sign they had "made it." The video throws in a raft of sight gags from the chicken dance to Dick Van Patten in the audience, and cows and sheep.

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"Word Crimes" (2014)

Weird Al Yankovic - Word Crimes
Weird Al Yankovic - "Word Crimes". Courtesy RCA

Weird Al Yankovic uses Robin Thicke's huge hit "Blurred Lines" to produce a rant about the lack of proper English grammar in today's world, particularly among online commenters.  The song quickly became his fourth top 40 pop hit single in the US. A number of observers compared the song favorably to the 1970s and 1980s animated educational film series Schoolhouse Rock!

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I Lost On Jeopardy (1984)

Weird Al Yankovic - I Lost On Jeopardy
Weird Al Yankovic - "I Lost On Jeopardy". Courtesy Scotti Brothers

Believe it or not, this parody of Greg Kihn's "Jeopardy" was released over 3 months before the debut of the current version of the Jeopardy game show featuring Alex Trebek. The video details Weird Al as a tremendous failure as a Jeopardy contestant.